I meant say that at the Iona meeting last Friday I agreed to front a concert of one of the more amazing human beings to walk this planet.
I met Paul Baker nearly 30 years ago when he had just come out of 7 years as a Trappist monk. He kept me and over 200 others at a youth event enthralled as he sung his life using a guitar he built from a chest of drawers and a table leg!
He still uses that guitar as he now promotes the lives of the very poor in Nicaragua where he now lives
In Nicaragua Zero Hunger is the flagship programme of the new Sandinista government, dedicated to the vision that, 'For the first time ever, every child in Nicaragua will have food to eat, every day',
Paul works closely with Zero Hunger, promoting it both within and outwith Nicaragua. He specializes in the beautifully passionate songs of Chile's murdered singer/songwriter Víctor Jara.
Paul has worked in Chile with Inti Illimani and Joan Jara, Víctor's widow and lived with Salvadorans under death squad attack in Los Angeles, where he joined Susan Sarandon, Martin Sheen and countless 'ordinary' people in protesting unjust US wars.
He lives now in Nicaragua where he often sings with Carlos Mejia Godoy, Salvador Cardenal and others who carry on the passionate tradition of Joan, Victor and their friends.
He is International Coordinator for Echoes of Silence, a network of 'artists with dirt under their fingernails'. Based in Managua, with his ex-guerrilla wife, Fátima Hernández, and their family, he is also co-founder of the fair trade cooperative Café Sandino and the Victor Jara Workers' Movement.
Paul will be in Concert at St Georges West Church on January 31st at 7.30pm as part of a national tour. Entry by Donation. He works gratis full-time in Nicaragua, relying on tours to stay alive.
I haven't seen Paul for over 25 years. I cannot recommend strongly enough to you to try to meet him for the first time when he is in Edinburgh in January.
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